Well, it’s time to start your weekend off with a chuckle again. The Fat-Bottom-Fifties Facebook page we told you about in March is moving right along. We notice we haven’t shared any of the posts with you since May, so here are 5 to put a smile on your face!
One theme that keeps popping up as we continue on our fierce journeys is “simplicity.” Many of us are de-cluttering, scaling back, buying less stuff, and de-stressing by simplifying things that just don’t need to be as complicated as they can be. And that includes home decor. We want around us that which makes us smile. And smiles don’t have to cost a bunch of money! Here are five to frame* that keep things interesting – but simple!
1. For the kitchen: Beautiful or whimsical food pictures. Tear them out of magazines or old cookbooks. Because they are virtually free, there’s no problem changing with the seasons, holidays or your latest yen!
2. For the den: Maps. They are available wherever you go at convenience stores. Second-hand book stores are a great place to look for books on specific places, geography, biblical maps, and vintage depictions. Travel the world on a wall!
3. Craft areas: Vintage Sewing Patterns. Framed individually, in duos or groups, they make an interesting focal point. You can often find them for a dollar or less at antique stores or malls.
4. For dining areas: Pages from a picture book. If you don’t have any old ones you’re willing to deconstruct, check out garage sales and used book stores. In regular book stores, there’s often bins of clearance books that can be had at drastically reduced prices.
5. For bedrooms: Fabrics. Some of those “scraps” in fabric and craft stores are pretty good size. Play with color combos and textures to make interesting groupings.
For bathrooms: Print an inspirational saying on a complimentary scrapbook paper. If you don’t have a favorite saying, do a Google search using any word plus “quote” or “saying,” such as “kindness quotes” or “funny sayings.” You’ll have so many to choose from, you may need more frames!
*Reasonably priced quality frames can be found in clearance sections of department stores (ask!), craft stores, garage sales, antique stores, second-hand stores. A little craft or spray paint could turn it into the perfect match. You might even find some frames in your own closets or basements – if you’re willing to remove the picture of the relative you weren’t willing to hang on your wall!
Many of us enjoy the shot of bright color, freshness, or mood lift that flowers or plants provide, but having a garden is not an option. Whether you don’t have the time, space, or commitment that tending a garden requires, today’s Friday Five offers smile-inducing alternatives!
1. Vegetable pots. Make yourself a mini garden with a potted vegetable or two. Cherry tomatoes (I know – not really a vegetable!) are a great choice for patio containers – attractive and fruit producing! Click on the picture to see more ideas for veggies that do well in containers.
2. Windowsill herb garden. The pictured kit was found on Amazon.com for $22 (give or take a few pennies), but you should be able to find something similar at a local lawn and garden type store. It brings fragrant right into your kitchen and makes it easy to snip some fresh right into your meals!
3. $5 grocery store bouquet deconstructed. You’ll be surprised at the bang you can get for your buck by trimming individual blooms down and putting one or two in mini vases, juice or shot glasses. Line them up on a windowsill, group them on a tray in the middle of a table, or put a few in different rooms of the house to spread the love!
4. Remember terrariums? It’s a great way to bring a mini landscape indoors. Head to Pinterest for a plethora of ideas on containers – from light bulbs to jumbo bottles and everything in between! If you like the ones pictured below, click on it for some great how-tos.
5. Succulents in bright pots or cans. These are a great choice for those of us without green thumbs. These hard-to-kill (but trust me when I say not impossible-to-kill) plants nestled in colorful cans turn a small space into a fiesta!
We hope these great ideas will leave you saying:
Do you like the look or creative aspect of decorating Easter Eggs but don’t want to tangle with the messy dye versions of yesteryear? Looking for something fun and different? For our Friday Five we’ve rounded up five that will put a smile on your face and add a little panache to your Easter decor! Click on the pictures for instructions and material lists.
1. Easter Egg Portraits – fun for hiding, decorating, or to use at the table instead of namecards for assigned seating!
2. Decorator Eggs – they’re easier to do than they may look and are a great choice if you have a color scheme you’re working with.
3. Pineapple Eggs – won’t these look great next to your fruit bowl?
4. Silk-wrapped Eggs – they are unique, surprisingly uncomplicated to create, and make a very classy presentation!
5. Strawberry Easter Eggs – OK, so they’re not technically eggs. But aren’t they pretty? And you don’t even have to go elsewhere for directions. Melt some white chocolate, put it into as many different small bowls as you want colors, drop a dot or two of food coloring in each and blend. Dip the strawberries and let dry for a few minutes. Decorate with contrasting colored white chocolate by squeezing through a small frosting nozzle or the clipped corner of baggie. Pretty in a platter or for a garnish on each plate!
Every once in a while, you just want to shake things up – do something different. Yet we can be limited by the constraints of our obligations, responsibilities and financial resources. So how can we rabble-rouse without going too far or spending too much? One way is to take it to Facebook! Our fledgling Facebook page captures our attitudes with just the right mix of chuckles, offbeat humor, and the occasional bit of wisdom. Here’s a sampling:
Growing up I was kind of known for sticking up for the underdog. Or as M would say, I always had a “project” going – someone I was trying to pull out of their shell. I thought it was a middle-child thing – you know, wanting to fix everybody and have them get along? I thought that was something different about me. Recently, when I saw McFarland USA the same day I saw back footage on the American hockey team that took the gold medal in the 1980 Olympics, I realized there’s nothing different about rooting for the underdog – it’s what we all do! It’s why Kevin Costner’s McFarland USA (a movie about hispanic teens in an economically depressed town who rise above challenges to form the first cross-country running team at their school) leaves us with a smile on our faces. It’s why people who didn’t even like hockey went nuts as the American team came out of nowhere to win a gold medal – an event that was memorialized in the 2004 movie Miracle.
There’s a reason this genre is referred to as “feel-good” flicks. It lifts our spirits to see an underdog succeed. It makes us believe if they can do (whatever they did) we can do whatever we aspire to. It makes us want to be better people.
If you want a little pick-me-up this weekend, check out one these c’mon-you-can-do-it movies. Here’s 5 of my favorites.
At number 5: ROCKY. Even if you abhor boxing (as I do), you can’t resist rooting for Rocky Balboa as he builds up his stamina for the big fight. And you’ll be humming the iconic song long after the movie is over. Yo, Adrian!
At number 4: KARATE KID Having moved to a new town with single mom for his senior year, Daniel LaRusso develops a friendship with a girl that results in his getting bullied and beat up by her arrogant ex and his buddies – guys who practice a vicious, unethical form of martial arts. The apartment manager, an eccentric humble man, takes Daniel under his wise wing and helps him develop skills to fight back – at a personal cost to himself. Everybody needs a Mr. Miyagi in their life.
At number 3: MY COUSIN VINNY When Bill and friend Stan, in the wrong place at the wrong time in a backwater southern town, get arrested for murder, Bill calls the only attorney he knows. Which happens to be his cousin, a New York lawyer (played by Joe Pesci) who has only practiced personal injury and never won case. But hey, family is family – so cuz comes down to help out and take on the cocky DA and an annoyed judge who has a bias about big-city folk. As a lawyer who has seen way too much bullying in the courtroom, to me this was a hilarious version of Rocky. Fun, fun, fun. I would be remiss to not mention the under-appreciated, smart-as-a-whip girlfriend played by Marissa Tomei – worth the watch just to see what a hoot she is!
At number 2: HOOSIER An outsider to the farming community where he’s the new basketball coach in 1954, Norman Dale has to deal with local narrow minds as well as a bunch of (for the most part) unathletic players. Trying to describe this story might make it sound dry – and it was anything but. The personalities and the build-up of this movie climax in what has been touted as one of the all-time great movie sports moments. I’m a sucker for movies like this that are based on, or inspired by, real life events. I’m also a sucker for movies with Gene Hackman in them!
AND MY ALL TIME FAVORITE SEEING THE TRANSFORMATION FROM UNDERDOG TO AMAZING WINNER?
At number 1: TO SIR WITH LOVE The ever proper Thackery (played by the always-incredible Sidney Poitier), looses out at an engineering job and ends up taking a job teaching a high school class full of street savvy, problem riddled, disrespectful toughs – a group nobody wanted to take on (including Thackery) and that had scared off a teach or two before him. What he left these students with was worth more than a 1000 gold medals – and what they left him with changed his life. A MUST SEE! Below is the iconic song from the 1967 movie, sung by Lulu, which sums up with poignancy the heart of this move.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE UNDERDOG MOVIE?
What’s the first thing you think of when you hear “Superbowl”? And what’s the second thing you think of after thinking “cool commercials?” It may be a tie between easy-to-grab snacks, camaraderie, and the game itself. Well, here’s 7 ideas (plus a bonus) for your gathering that will have you thinking more about fun than calories. Go (insert your favorite) team!
1. Free football printable to set the mood. Jazz up your food and decorate your table with the paper printouts found HERE.
2. To start out the snacking. Remember those easy-to-make white-chocolate dipped pretzels from the holidays? You can use miniature straight pretzels or small pretzel knots to slash the calories and trade Christmas hues for team colors!
3. Glazed pineapple sausage bites – an idea from Real House Moms using kielbasa. Switch to the turkey kielbasa or sausage for less calories and bottled teriaki sauce for ease! (Click picture for recipe)
4. Marinated feta skewers. Another flavorful bite. (Click picture for recipe)
5. 5-Ingredient Sausage Balls. This made-over favorite now includes some whole-grain nutrition! (Click picture for recipe)
6. Chocloate-covered strawberry footballs. Several sources stated that one chocolate covered strawberry is about 57 calories. Even if you add in a few more for the extra stripes, it still makes for a reasonable sweet ending to the finger-food feast.
7. Another game going on: Commercial Bingo. Commercials are the best part of the program for some people – playing Commercial Bingo gives you another reason to pay attention to them! Go HERE for cards ready to print off, or make your own!
BONUS: SOMETHING NEW!
Whether for a starting snack or a post-game munch, how about a cheese puff? Well, not cheese puffs exactly – but “bean puffs” doesn’t sound as good. While it comes in cheddar and white cheddar, hot chili lime is a zesty flavor profile if you’re looking for a bit of oomph! And check out the ingredients on Beanitos’ version of this familiar-looking crunchy treat!
INGREDIENTS: Whole Navy Beans, Long Grain Rice Flour, Sunflower Oil, Tapioca, Lime Juice, Lime Oil, Cane Sugar, Garlic, Sea Salt, Onion, Tomato, Citric Acid, Chipotle Pepper, Paprika, Spices, Jalapeno Pepper.
WHAT’S GOING ON AT YOUR HOUSE ON SUPERBOWL SUNDAY?
Nothing brightens up a dull winter day like a zippy plaid. There’s something warm and cozy about it even when it’s just a glimpse. But not all plaids are created equal. Let’s start out with a few that make us smile.
You can call them gumboots, puddle jumpers or rubber boots – we call them cool!
Bangles that will sharpen up professional wear or add a colorful shot to playwear.
What can be cozier than snuggling up in a flannel nightshirt??
OK – maybe these Pendelton blankets are a tad cozier. I don’t know – I think maybe it’s a cozy tie between the nightshirt and the blankets!
Love these notebooks – a little plaid comfort for your desk or glovebox.
The plaid tablecloth sets a neat table with a homey touch.
Who could forget that 1970s retro-cool poncho from our Orange Crush post?? The ultimate in wearable plaid!
There can be too much of a good thing . . .
WAY too much of a good thing . . .
Not enough of a good thing . . .
Maybe better in the den than the bathroom?
They call it “plaid mixing.” We call it “hard on the eyes.”
Finally, the question is answered:
Can you believe that two auspicious holidays fall within a day of each other? Normally such an event would leave people in a quandary – do we celebrate holiday one, or holiday two? As you can probably tell from our celebration of National Donut Day and National Book Lover’s Day, we sure don’t like to miss out on any special occasions!
National Dress Up Your Pet Day takes place on January 14, 2015. It was founded to celebrate pets and to support the pet fashion community in a fun way. The very next day is National Hat Day. Apparently it – literally – takes an act of Congress to make any national holiday official, and neither of these are on the congressional books. But, in spite of the fact that their origin is unknown, they’ve both been around for years. Hmmmm – what’s the best way to combine these two celebrations . . . .
If you ever watched The Tonight Show while Jay Leno was its host, you probably heard him routinely criticize people who dressed pets. He would go on and on about the “morons” who put their pets in people clothes and how humiliated or angry the pets clearly were. And then he’d show the pictures. Because we can relate to Jay’s position, we’d like you to know that we did not dress these animals. Having said that, we appreciate their willingness to pose for such pictures, thus providing us the the perfect illustration for our holiday combo. We’d also like you to know that no animals were hurt in the process of making these pictorials. Unless you take into account the pride factor.
THE CASUAL LOOK
THE PARTY PIC
WHERE POSH AND RUGGED COME TOGETHER
HAT? OR JUST MEMORABLE?
OK – SO NOT EVERYONE WAS PLEASED TO PARTICIPATE
THE TRADITIONAL COLLECTION-ENDING BRIDE
WE HOPE YOU HAVE ENJOYED OUR FIRST – AND MOST DEFINITELY OUR LAST – DRESSED PET PARADE!